American Music Club
American Music Club no doubt rank as one of the most popular and widely influential Indie Rock acts of the late 1980s and early 1990s. They really carry two identities -- one existing before and the other after their 1991 landmark effort, Everclear. Pre-Everclear albums were stark, beautifully dissonant displays built around singer Mark Eitzel's poetic and boozed tales as well as guitar player Vudi's penchant for bandwidth-filling textures and focused progressions. Dark, lonely, haunting songs from the Tom Mallon-produced masterpiece California (e.g. "Firefly" and "Blue and Grey Shirt") qualify as some of the absolute best in AMC's catalog. A marked change in production and songcraft ushered them into the spotlight for Everclear. The huge sound on "Rise" and "Ex-Girlfriend" was a staggeringly appropriate graduation. Ensuing albums found the band gravitating toward Eitzel's schmaltz, and though they occasionally flared up on songs such as "Challenger" and the smart yet disposable "Wish the World Away," AMC never regained their composure and called it quits after San Francisco (1994).